To Your Health
May, 2007 (Vol. 01, Issue 05)
Seven Foods for a Flawless Complexion
Revitalize Your Skin Without Chemicals or Plastic Surgery
By Dr. Ping Zhang
Aging is a fact of life. While many people try harsh chemical peels, exfoliants and costly plastic surgeries to reclaim their youth, walk no farther than your kitchen to achieve a radiant complexion naturally using ancient Chinese food therapy.
Let's Face It: Aging is a Fact of Life.
While you can always try harsh chemical peels and a host of costly - and risky - plastic surgeries to revitalize your skin, look no further than your local market to find effective, natural ways to achieve a flawless complexion.
Just as Chinese herbs promote health, beauty, healing and rejuvenation for our face and body, Chinese texts laud the healing and beautifying effects of many foods. Food therapy can be a powerful tool for smoothing wrinkles and diminishing those dark eye circles, bags and facial discolorations.
Food therapy for facial complexion adheres to the basic tenet of Chinese medical philosophy, which holds that external beauty is a mirror reflecting internal health. These foods help address the internal imbalances that result in a spotted or discolored complexion. Of course, their beneficial effect is gradual, and for best results, any food therapy program should go hand in hand with other natural complexion treatments - such as herbs, acupuncture, and acupressure.
Here are some of the best foods the Chinese associate with a spotless and radiant complexion:
Chinese Name: Yi Yi Ren
This wonderful barley-like grain, when eaten as food, can help the body clear up discoloration of the facial complexion. It is also a very effective strengthener of the digestive system.
To find and prepare coix seed: Cook it in soup as you would with other beans and barley, or boil it into tea (15 g) and drink it all day.
Chinese Name: Sang Shen Zi
These fruits of the mulberry tree contain beneficial antioxidants, help overcome weakness, and brighten a withered-looking complexion. They also are beneficial for clearing dark spots from the face.
To find and prepare mulberry fruit: Mulberry fruit is available in food markets and can be eaten as you would any berry. You also can buy fresh mulberry juice and drink it, or use it in your cooking.
Chinese Name: Bai Luo Be
This is a fairly common turnip, often called daikon, which offers plenty of medicinal benefits. It detoxifies the skin and has a beneficial effect on the complexion when eaten regularly.
To find and prepare white turnip: It can be found in most regular food markets. Clean and cut it into small pieces, and then cook it with your regular soup. You also can shred and prepare it as a salad. For facial discoloration, juice white turnip every morning and drink about half a cup.